Winter weather isn’t enough to stop the most adventurous travelers from getting out there and embarking on an exciting, memorable vacation. In fact, some choose to embrace the snowy conditions and make winter sightseeing part of their grand getaways. Most of the major national parks and other scenic attractions are basically tourist-free, so there really isn’t a better time to explore the open roads!
Not scared of a little snow? Head out this winter to explore these 5 incredible winter road trips throughout America – you’ll be glad you did!
Winter in Arches National Park is an incredibly peaceful time, offering ample opportunity to see the sights crowd-free and without the scorching heat that can affect summertime visits. (You may even get an arch to yourself!).
According to Travel + Leisure, “natural sandstone sculptures assume an ethereal quality when covered in a layer of snow and bathed in soft winter light—best for desert photography,” – and we couldn’t agree more!
With over 36 miles on the park’s Scenic Drive, there is much to be discovered. For your comfort, we recommend dressing in layers, and stopping for a stunning walk along the Park Avenue Trail!
Looping through Montezuma and Mecca, the Brown Driving Route is about 25 miles through Parke County, Indiana.
Chock-full of beautiful red covered bridges, snowy meadows, and frozen rivers, Park County is an utterly beautiful sight during the winter months. With over 30 covered bridges to check out, travelers will also marvel at the horse-drawn carriages traveling through them into Amish country.
Enjoy 5 famous driving circuits – each offering stunning scenery and incredible photo opps!
Boasting over 80 picturesque miles, this route travels along the US 321 and I-40E through Tennessee and North Carolina.
As you drive along, don’t miss the fantastic scenery of the southern alpine wilderness, complete with trails that lead to breathtaking (and leafless) forests in Great Smoky National Park. Make a pit stop to admire the 5,000 feet of Mount Cammerer, and again at the Ober Gatlinburg Resort to do a little skiing (somewhat of a rarity in Tennessee!).
If you’re looking for a serious trek, set aside 4 or 5 days and make the incredible journey along the 240-mile loop that begins in Duluth before moving into Wisconsin, directing you to the out-of-this-world incredible ice caves of the Apostle Islands National Lakeshore.
If the ice is solid enough, make a pit stop to hike through to explore the magic of the icicles and caves. Be sure to dress in warm layers, and of course, have the camera at the ready!
Crossing over 6 state highways, you’ll travel over 50 miles on a several hour adventure into the desert, starting just north of Santa Fe. According to Travel + Leisure, “dry snowflakes hang on junipers and piñon pines as you travel past the 14th-century Nambé Pueblo and wood-carving village of Cordova. Later, the snowcapped Truchas Peaks rise in the eastern distance, more than 13,000 feet in height, as the valley spreads below.”
Be sure to stop along the way to marvel at the mid-18th century adobe churches along The High Road – they’re truly a sight to see!
Hitting the open road this winter? Find InTown Suites’ extended stay properties on the road; your home away from home during your next great adventure.